Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Witty philosophe-y self-awareness

"A philosopher who is a bad Catholic implores a philosopher who is a bad Protestant to grant a residency privilege to a philosopher who is a bad Jew. There is too much philosophy in all this; reason cannot but support the petition."*

- Jean-Baptiste de Boyer, Marquis d'Argens to Frederick II the Great of Prussia, petioning the latter for permission for Moses Mendelssohn to reside in Berlin.

*("Un philosophe, mauvais catholique, supplie un philosophe, mauvais protestant, de donner le privilège à un philosophe, mauvais juif. Il y a dans tout ceci trop de philosophie, pour que la raison ne soit pas du côté de la demande". )

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